Chapter Eight: Until the End
Lita was getting stir crazy. They were still two months away from Namek, two months. Sure, she had been training. The trip had been non-stop training. Lita had grown in both skill and strength. She was stronger than she had ever been. Her power as the Queen of Jupiter was nothing compared to this. There would have been no one in the Milky Way even close to matching her. However, the fact she had been stuck on a ship for almost a year was unbearable.
But, her biggest question perhaps, was all of this enough?
The hardest part in all of this was the uncertainty. Would all of this hard work and constant vigilance pay-off in the long run? Not only did they have to worry about the Ginyu Force, they had to worry about Frieza, Zarbon, and Dodoria. The strongest opponents she had ever faced were after them. Not to mention the planet's natives, the Namekians. Would a peaceful people, according to Mina, bristle at their presence on their planet?
How did it get to this? A year ago she was sitting on a throne, guiding her people through the days and nights like a star in the sky. Her planet was strong, they were wise, and they were happy. Now, where was Jupiter? How did her people fair under the hand of Frieza's men? She scowled and jumped off of her bed. Thinking about that would do nothing to fix her current problems. It was time to train.
Mina and Turles were currently fighting in the training room. The once flighty princess of Venus was showing great progress. Lita winced as Turles' fist connected with her jaw. Oh well. Builds character.
Raditz was also watching, nodding in approval every time one of the combatants connected their hits. Mina shot a beam of light out of her hand, which narrowly missed Turles, and he rebutted with a ki blast of his own. Mina dodged and tried one of her elemental attacks again, this time hitting Turles in the stomach. He growled and pounced on her, pinning her arms to the ground. Lita rolled her eyes. Saiyan pride.
"Hey, get out of there. It's our turn!" Raditz kept banging on the glass. Turles let Mina go, and Lita was surprised to see Turles offer a hand to pull her up.
"I think I should fight you, Lita." Mina mentioned as she pranced out of the training room. She had a towel wrapped around her neck and all of her hair piled in a knot on top of her head. "Maybe I should rest and these two could fight. Then I can show you what I've got!"
No words were shared between Turles and Raditz, but the two were not going to argue with Mina. They bolted into the training area and slammed the door before Lita could get a word in. She snorted and followed Mina into the kitchen. The blonde wanted a cold beverage.
Mina was definitely changing. She had more defined muscle mass, more skill and more fight in her than ever before. The day that Bardock informed them of Serena's departure into space was the day the blonde had changed. She became more determined than ever. Now, the former princess was a difference person. Mina was a fighter.
"It's been a while since we have heard from Bardock or the others on Planet Vegeta. Do you think everything is ok?"
Lita sighed. That had been weighing heavily on her as well. "I've talked to Raditz about it. He is afraid that word is out Vegeta is off planet. Some Saiyans might try to take the opportunity to overrun the palace."
Mina'a face turned white. "What about Raye? Amy?"
"I hope that Bardock and Nappa can keep them safe." Lita shrugged. There was no use dwelling on something they couldn't control. "Raditz tells me his father and Nappa are the strongest Saiyans left on the planet. But, a part of me wonders what good that will do if they are facing a team of pissed off Saiyans against the monarchy."
Mina gulped down the rest of her water. When did life become so complicated? "Do you think we will be enough?"
Lita leaned on the counter. "What? What do you mean?"
The blonde got up from her chair and made herself a cold press. Her face hurt. Stupid Turles. "Do you think that we will be enough to save the universe? Do you think we even stand a chance? The odds seem stacked against us. I mean, is there even the smallest chance that we can defeat Frieza?"
The brunette scowled. "Well, I sure as hell hope so. We are the only hope this universe has."
Well, that was comforting. Mina managed a smile. "No pressure, right?"
Lita watched as Mina made another glass of water. "What are you doing? Turles punch you too hard? You made yourself a glass already."
The blonde laughed. "Oh, I know. I'll be right back."
Lita watched as Mina slinked out of the kitchen with the water. It looked like the close confines and brawls were doing more for Mina and Turles than building strength.
The brunette laughed and drank the rest of Mina's water.
Raye bolted up from her bed, sweat lining her brow and chills along her arms. Something wasn't right. She looked around her room and saw nothing but darkness, but that feeling of foreboding never left. Raye threw back her covers and put on her robe, her arms encircling her stomach. There was something coming.
Or was it already here?
She ignored a persistent cramp around her abdomen and opened her door, looking both to the left and to the right of her room before fleeing down the corridor. The need to run was overbearing. Her heart was racing, her hands were clammy, and the thought of saving her child from whatever was heading her way overtook any thought of discomfort as her feet padded down the hall.
A pair of strong hands pulled her into a dark nook in the hall, a stone statue blocking her from any stranger's eyes. Her thin fingers wrapped around those of her assailant, but his grip was strong. His hand loosened its grasp on her mouth and stomach.
"Don't make a sound."
Raye relaxed against Bardock and listened closely. There were voices. A loud crash resonated down the hall, angry voices buried in the sound of destruction. Her heart picked up speed again. She looked up to Bardock and he placed a single finger in front of his mouth, signaling to keep silent. Raye did as she was told without argument.
"Where is she?" A man hollered. The sound of glass shattering made her jump. Were they looking for her?
"Stupid bitch is gone. Best go find her."
The sound of feet, curses, and ki blasts filled her ears. Several men flew past them, heading towards the west wing of the palace. Raye felt her hands shake. Amy and Nappa were down there. Bulma, Krillin, and Yamcha were too. Raye grimaced and held her stomach. What was wrong?
"What's wrong?" Bardock held her at the elbow.
"Nothing." Raye frowned. Now was not the time. "Did you see this?"
"Yes. I went to the ocean around midnight. Came back as soon as the vision was over." Bardock couldn't thank the gods enough for urging him to the ocean.
"We need to go-" Raye made to take off down the hall after the slew of Saiyans, but Bardock held her back. She attempted to tear her arm away, but he was much too strong. "Let me go!"
"No. I need to get you out of here."
"No! I am not leaving without Amy!" Raye seethed and tried to jerk her arm free.
Bardock held her face in his hands. "Now, listen to me. I have to get you out of here. If you die, your child dies. Can you set aside your pride for once and just listen to me?"
Why did she always have to choose? Could she not have both? Odds were that the other girls would die on Namek. If she didn't go get Amy she would be alone. She couldn't raise a child alone. Hell, she couldn't live alone. Raye ignored the searing pain in her stomach and looked Bardock firm in the eyes.
The man looked positively furious, but he growled and dropped her arm. God, why couldn't he just tell her no and carry her ass to safety? Bardock moved her further into the nook and instructed her to sit.
"Stay here. If they see you, they will kill you without a second thought. I'm sure they have been planning this since Vegeta left for Namek." Bardock had a bad feeling as a flash of something flickered across her eyes. Was it pain? He made sure to keep his power level low and made to leave. "Stay here."
Raye nodded. "Thank you."
He said nothing more and tore down the hall.
She felt more alone than ever. She held her stomach, her unborn son, and listened to the screams and cries of servants and Saiyans alike being massacred. Was this worse than the destruction of the Moon Kingdom? Raye whispered "yes" and buried her head in her knees. Last time she wasn't worried about a child. All she had was Serena, and she knew that Serena had others to help should she perish. But, if she died now, her baby would die too.
A ki blast tore through the wall beside her, blasting rocks and rubble all over her. She covered herself as best she could, but before she knew it there were bloody scrapes and gashes all along her arms and face. Her gown and robe were pinned under a hunk of what used to be the wall, but with a swift tear she set herself free. The statue was gone. Her hiding place was compromised. Should she go to the left and find Bardock?
The palace was being completely destroyed. The ceiling was caving in, dropping rocks and light fixtures all along the corridors. She looked to the left and fought against everything in her to go after Bardock. Most of the fighting was in that direction. She could see Saiyans fighting in the sky. A feeling of relief shot through her briefly, knowing that there were some still loyal to Vegeta. That feeling was dashed though, as soon as her eyes rested on an unfortunate someone.
It was him. It was the man who killed Vegeta's father.
He saw her a few moments after she saw him, but those moments allowed her to attack first. A wave of fire swallowed him, engulfing his weak body in a wall of flame. She was lucky a non-Saiyan saw her. If it had been anyone else she would have probably been killed.
The man howled in pain, rolling on the ground and trying to put himself out. He was burned badly, but that did nothing to assuage her anger and hate. Raye stood over him and called upon Mars for her bow and arrow of fire. He quivered, but out of pain or fear she didn't know.
"I will retake my palace and place your head on a pike outside my quarters." She told him matter-of-factly.
He smiled. "By all means, my head is yours to take."
She released the arrow without remorse. It hit him straight in the chest, piercing his heart.
Raye did not have much time for celebration. Shouts and ki blasts filled her ears, telling her it was time to run. Not just run, but run fast. Her unprotected feet bled with every rock and shard she stepped on, but there was no other choice. Raye stopped inside a room and leaned against the wall, holding her stomach in her arms. It hurt. She bit back a cry and waited for it to subside. Why was she in so much pain?
Then it hit her.
On the other side of the palace, Bardock found Nappa, and Krillin fighting followers of Guan. Nappa took one warrior and tossed him into the air, blasting him to bits with the flick of a wrist. Most of these people fighting against them were foreign aliens, but there were no doubt a few Saiyan deflectors around.
"Where's Amy?" Bardock asked, punching a hole through the chest of an unfortunate fellow with antennae.
"In the lab. She said she had to get some things. Bulma went with her." Nappa and Krillin took a moment with the break in fighting.
"What could she possibly need at the moment the palace is being overrun?" Bardock could die on the spot. These women were all insane.
"When the Queen goes into labor, Amy said she will need some things to deliver the baby since we might not have access to the palace." Krillin answered, not daring to use Raye's name. She had been much nicer in the months they had stayed in the palace, but damn she was scary.
Bardock felt like he had been blasted off Planet Vegeta and back. He knew there was something wrong with Raye, but he left her alone like a moron.
"Fuck!" He looked around, watching as insurgents descended upon them. "I don't have time for this shit! Kill these bastards and meet at headquarters."
Nappa nodded in affirmative to the code and took off into the sky, Krillin right behind him.
Bardock tried wading through the warriors in his path, but he kept getting stopped to fight. The foreigners were weak, no doubt, but the Saiyan warriors could hold their own. Most of the Saiyans were fighting Nappa and Krillin at the moment, so he was able to deal with his opponents swiftly. He had yet to see Guan however, and that worried him. If he wasn't fighting Nappa and Krillin, or descending upon him from the sky, where the hell was he?
The statue he left Raye behind was completely destroyed. Fearing the worst, he threw some rubble out of the way. Thankfully, the only sign of her in the rocks was the length of her skirt. Bardock continued on, plowing through the dead and dying along the way.
He passed the barbequed remains of someone in the corridor, so Bardock knew Raye had come this way. The only thing in this direction that Raye might have headed towards would be the hangar and communications bay. The communicator he used to communicate to Turles and Raditz was destroyed in the collapse of the palace, he was sure, so perhaps she was trying to reach the other ship.
Bardock ran faster than he had ever run before.
Serena tossed and turned, trying to cover her ears with her blankets. It was in the middle of the night (or the time they designated as night during their space trip), what was that godforsaken noise? The blonde, usually not one for conflict, jumped out of bed and prepared a nasty diatribe to assault the noisy perpetrator with.
"Hello? Is anyone awake?"
She held her arms close to her chest and walked into the communications bay. Was that a woman's voice?
The person on the screen was unfamiliar to her. Her hair was blue, lighter than Amy's, and hung to her shoulders. She looked panicked, but at the same time retained every ounce of control she seemed to possess. There was a bloody streak across her forehead and she looked exceptionally tired. Serena began to worry.
"Hello?" The blonde asked meekly.
The blue-haired woman sighed in relief. "I was afraid all of you were asleep. But, no time for that! You have to listen to me."
She turned around at the sound of footsteps. Vegeta, Goku, and Gohan finally decided to show up. Goku and Gohan smiled and charged closer to the screen. It appeared as though this woman knew them.
"Bulma! I can't believe it's you!" Gohan looked so happy. Serena felt a bit envious of this Bulma person. She had been trying to get Gohan to like her for months.
"I'm happy to see you guys too, but we have problems."
Vegeta snorted. "What is the problem?"
Bulma directed her attention to the King of Vegeta. She blushed faintly, but pulled together some resolve. "The palace is under attack. That Guan guy rallied together some troops. The entire west wing of the palace is destroyed."
"What the fuck?!" Vegeta barked. "I leave the planet for not even a year and my palace gets destroyed?!"
"Hey, buddy, this is not my fault." Bulma snarled.
"Don't "buddy" me! Do you know who I am?"
The woman laughed. "Yeah, and I still don't care. Not my fault!"
Serena, however, was not too worried about their argument. "Guys, shut up! What about Raye? Amy?"
The occupants of the room were a little shocked to hear Serena's outburst, but the surprise of it all quickly dissipated with the volume of the situation.
"Yes, what of my son?" Vegeta ignored the topic of Raye altogether.
"Amy is with me. I don't know about Raye." Bulma frowned. "We are getting some things together. When Raye goes into labor we won't have the convenience of the palace medical equipment."
There was a long silence. So many things were unsure. Vegeta looked at the people aboard the ship with him, watching as their determination crumbled beneath their feet. He watched the blood slide down Bulma's face, and for brief moment he thought about their plan and the uncertainty of it. Sure, Bardock and Nappa could hold their own, but could they defeat everyone on Planet Vegeta who opposed his throne? No. There were too many of Frieza's lackeys and deflectors roaming around. Where would they go? Could they hide until they returned?
Would he have an heir when he returned?
Bulma didn't even know the status of his wife. Perhaps she was dead. Maybe Guan found her and killed her in cold blood. The thought put him off a little. Not because he loved her, he didn't, but he knew she was miserable. Raye took on a crucial part of his plan, and now she was possibly dead. Vegeta's eyes flickered up to Bulma, who was waiting patiently for direction. Vegeta snorted. He couldn't believe he was about to do this.
"Everyone get out." Vegeta grumbled. Goku frowned in response.
"Wait a second, I think all of us-"
"I said get out!" Vegeta barked. "This has nothing to do with you."
Serena went over to Goku and grabbed his arm, pulling towards the exit. He didn't budge at first, but eventually Goku relaxed and began to drift with her. "Come on, Goku. Let's go."
Vegeta waited until Serena coaxed Goku and Gohan out of the room before he looked back to Bulma on the screen. She looked behind her, as if someone was coming. Vegeta heard Amy's voice and hoped that she couldn't hear him.
"Woman," He began, but he was cut off.
"Bulma." She interrupted. Burning palace be damned, these Saiyans would learn to use her name!
He frowned. "Bulma, I need you to deliver a message to Raye for me, should she still be alive when you find her.'
The woman looked uncomfortable, not liking the topic of Raye's relationship with Vegeta. Each time they spoke to one another they were so harsh, and it was obvious they didn't see eye-to-eye. Amy told her the circumstances behind their marriage, and the girl felt that if they had met under different circumstances it might have worked out. But, Raye was not one to be forced, and she had been forced into everything all for a planet she cared nothing for.
Bulma watched as the Saiyan King looked to the ground, obviously uncomfortable with what he was about to say.
"Tell her that I read my father's letter like she asked."
The woman felt her face twist into a look of confusion.
"Tell her that if she survives this night and the birth of my-" Vegeta paused. "our son… she will be released from our arrangement. The only thing she will need to worry about is keeping our son alive, should I not return. Planet Vegeta will either be returned to its former glory with Frieza's passing, or Frieza will win and come back to destroy it."
Bulma felt her face soften. This was perhaps the nicest she had ever seen the King.
The screen went black.
Raye held her stomach, gritting her teeth as she made her way to the communications bay. This all could not have happened at a worse time. How much time had passed? An hour? Two? How long had she been wondering the halls, hoping someone would come and get her out of here?
The explosions were getting closer, but there was no way she could move any faster. She was in early labor, but the contractions were stopping her every five minutes as she walked. Raye was sure the extreme stress did nothing to help her or her child, but there was no other option in sight.
"Hey, there she is!"
Raye turned around to see two aliens heading her way. They were wearing Frieza's armor, so she suspected that Frieza and Guan had been working with one another. Raye readied herself, fire coming out of her palms. One of them charged, and Raye unleashed a wave of fire and created a wall around herself. It did nothing to perturb her attacker, however, and she soon found herself face to face with no options. She readied her bow and arrow of fire once more, but Raye knew there was no way out of this. She hadn't been training; she hadn't learned any new skills to keep up with the Saiyan's or Frieza's men.
She released her arrow and watched the alien dodge with ease. Raye prepared herself again, but there wasn't a need to. Bardock appeared behind him and snapped his neck, and it wasn't until her wall of fire diminished that she noticed the second alien dead on the ground. Raye looked at him through the smoke and soot, and it she didn't think she had ever been more thankful to see anyone. Her picked her up and began running, hoping that Amy and Bulma had found what they needed.
"I'm sorry." He mumbled. "I shouldn't have left."
Raye waited a few moments to respond, trying to compose herself. Her arms were bloody, and between that and her contractions she was having a hard time collecting her thoughts.
"You only did because I asked you to."
Krillin was amazed at the speed in which Nappa dispatched his opponents. He was very skilled, and Krillin hoped that one day he could actually keep up. The amount of people who fought against the monarchy on this night was astounding. He only hoped that they could give everyone else enough time to escape and go to headquarters.
He hoped they survived to meet them there.
"Krillin!" Nappa tossed an alien into the air and blasted him into bits. "It's Guan!"
Sure enough, the big bastard was hanging overhead in the sky, watching as his minions died left and right. He was about as big as Nappa, black hair hanging in his face. He wore Saiyan Elite armor and a scouter, but it was obvious which side he was fighting for. He heard Nappa call his name, but Guan stayed away. His low-grade warriors could do his bidding.
Nappa checked his scouter, making a face Krillin didn't particularly like afterwards. Krillin flew closer, watching his surroundings as he did so. It seemed like their opponents were hanging back.
"What is it?"
"He's been training. Power level is much higher than before." Nappa grunted. "I can't take him and all of these cretins at once. We will need to fall back."
Krillin frowned. "But, we will lose the palace!"
"Don't you think I know that?" Nappa snarled. "The palace is already lost. We need to regroup and find some Saiyans still loyal to the crown."
Krillin knew he was right. It didn't matter how strong you were. If you were fighting millions alone, the odds of success were not particularly high. Not to mention they were fighting many of the Saiyan Elite. The strongest still on the planet.
"What do you think we should do?"
Nappa looked around. "They are hanging back. So they either killed Raye or can't find her. Let's take this moment and go to the communications bay to get the others. Hopefully, Raye and Bardock will be alive in there somewhere."
The two men flew down into the smoke, but Guan sent no one after them. He smirked. Planet Vegeta was his.
"Sir," A small alien was flying beside the Elite. "I have come to report that the Queen is dead."
Guan turned to see Opal.
Opal watched the fire reach the heavens and the palace crumble in place. He hoped that he could at least buy them time. Lita would have wanted that, at least. He knew that Lita was friends with the Queen, and although he hadn't seen her in months, Opal did what he could to help her.
"I will fight you cowards another day." Guan looked at the destruction with great pleasure, knowing Nappa and Krillin were there somewhere. "On this night, I celebrate my victory."
Amy hurried to Raye's side when she saw Bardock holding her. The wounds on Raye's arms, face and feet were disconcerting, but the worst of it was probably the fact Raye was in labor. Amy put her hand on Raye's stomach and counted during a contraction. Great.
"We need to get her out of here." Amy held a bag of supplies in her arms. "We still have time, but she is stressed. The baby can become stressed, and if we aren't careful something could happen."
No one needed to be reminded what that something could be. They needed this heir alive. If they wanted to have a hope of taking back the palace and reestablishing the monarchy should Vegeta die on Namek, the heir needed to live.
Bulma and Yamcha joined them, each holding bags of their own. Hopefully they would have enough. Nappa and Krillin flew into the room through the broken ceiling. Nappa nodded to the exit.
"We need to leave now. They backed off."
"What?" Bardock began moving. "Why would they do that?"
Krillin ran alongside Bulma and Yamcha. "Maybe they think the Queen is dead? Or perhaps they are focusing on finding her?"
Bulma had never moved so fast in her life. Adrenaline was a nice blessing. "I don't really care why, but we need to get moving. Where are we going?"
"Vegeta has an estate he used to live in before he became King. No one knows its there, but we will need to keep our power levels down. I'm sure the skies are crawling with Guan's minions." Nappa answered, stopping and picking up Amy. "I'm afraid we are going to head out on foot."
Yamcha took Bulma and the crew set out into the night. The streets were empty of warriors, only curious foreigners. The Saiyans were probably at the palace, either fighting against or for one of their own. Amy sighed and looked into the sky, watching the stars dart in and out of her vision. She wished they could fly to their destination. It would be much faster. But, running for Saiyans wasn't too bad an option. It was still faster than she could travel.
Amy heard Raye moaning every few minutes from labor pains. Had Raye seen this coming? No, probably not. She wished Raye's visions were more reliable. If she had seen this coming they could have been more prepared. Now, Amy would have to deliver a child without any sort of technology. She knew the basics. Amy worked alongside her doctors and scientists on Mercury. But, could she do it on her own?
She didn't exactly have a choice.
They arrived at the hidden manor when light broke out over the horizon. Vegeta's estate was remote enough that they shouldn't have any visitors. Frederick appeared at the door and hurried them in. He had been expecting them since the smoke screen and fires appeared in the skyline from the palace.
Bardock took Raye into her room, placing her on the bed in the gentlest way he knew how. Amy and Bulma rushed to her side, bandaging her cuts and putting some salve on her wounds. She groaned after each contraction, wanting more than anything to get this baby out.
"This is the most painful thing I have ever experienced." Raye grunted. "I would rather be beaten to the point of death, I believe."
"The worst part hasn't even arrived yet, so get ready." Amy didn't mind being brutally honest sometimes. "Get out, guys. You don't need to be in here."
The men didn't need to be told twice and got out of the room at once. Bulma followed them out and told them it would be a few hours. "Don't come in here every five seconds and pester us. This is a long process, and Raye doesn't need to be stressed out anymore than she already is."
Krillin went and attempted a nap. He was so tired he didn't even bother bandaging himself. Frederick went to the kitchen and made some food for the others. Saiyans had hearty appetites, but even they ignored the copious amounts of provisions lining the table. Between the stresses of possibly losing the heir, Raye dying in the process of giving birth, and the palace being overrun, no one had it in them to eat anything.
However, three agonizing hours later, the scream of a baby boy rang through the halls of the manor. The heir had been born.
End of Chapter Eight
So, yeah. Crazy chapter, huh? It was choppy on purpose. All of this stuff was supposed to be happening really fast. I hope it wasn't too hard to read.
littlemissanonymous- I'm glad you thought that was funny! Yamcha is annoying to me, and I think that might have shown through Bardock. lol
JtheChosen1- Thank you!
Boingy- Poor Raye does need hugs! Thanks for the review!
Cosmos Angel- the Earth Dragonballs are gone. Frieza blew the Earth up. Thank you for reviewing!
JewlBunny- poor Goku doesn't think sometimes! I'm glad you liked the twist!
Rena H.M- I think you probably liked this chapter! Raye had the baby! :) Thank you for reviewing!
Efyraa- Thank you! Yeah, Raye is my favorite scout, but I seem to be tormenting the poor woman in two of my fics! lol. Yes, I beta. Hit me up if you need one.
Thank you everyone!
Drop a line, if you so please.